A video game, based on a movie, about a video game…
Disney have released a game to coincide with the release of Wreck It Ralph. An animated film that can be best described as a gaming version of Toy Story, only instead of living toys, we have living video game characters.
Ralph is a gaming villain from a Donkey Kong-a-like plat-former called Fix-It Felix. But he gets fed-up with being typecast as the villain and embarks on a adventure into other famous video games, through the hub world Game Central Station.
This game then, serves to introduce us to some of the games and their characters through a compilation of sorts. There are three games available to begin with, with more promised later. First up is Ralph’s own game, ‘Fix-It Felix’. This is a real retro fare, much like Mario Bros, Bubble Bobble and, of course, Donkey Kong. In it you play as Felix and must fix broken windows that Ralph has wrecked. It looks and sounds simple, but later levels add obstacles to block your path as you climb the buildings. It’s a solid slice or retro platforming, and in my opinion is worth the entry price alone ($0.99).
The other two games are more filler really, particularly ‘Sweet Climber’, a Doodle Jump clone. Here you bounce Ralph up the screen on candy cane trees, bounce higher on jellies, and float up on marsh mallows, all the while collecting jelly beans. It gets dull pretty fast and of the three games available it feels rushed.
Hero’s Duty however, does fare better. While the game in question in the movie is similar looking to a Metroid-like 1st person actioner, here it becomes a top down twin stick shooter, with a bit of a Robotron and Alien Breed feel. It’s actually quite fun to play, offering up cool power-ups to take out the waves of enemies. But, it does get repetitive fast and there is little variation to the creatures.
Disney will be adding new games to Wreck It Ralph, though it’s not clear if these will be free, or In-App purchases. The first of these (which is teased on the game’s home-screen) is Turbo Time. I’m expecting either a Pole Position, or a Super Sprint clone.
Overall, as a tool to wet your appetite for the movie’s release, Wreck-It Ralph does a good job of offering up some decent gameplay, especially when compared to other blatant movie or product tie-ins out there. It’s a little inconsistent in its quality, both in content and visuals. But, the star of this compilation is undoubtedly Fix-It Felix, which even as a standalone title would be worth a $0.99 punt.